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Who gets a say in developing creative

Defining roles and setting clear expectations for creative feedback helps to move creative workflows forward.



min read

Oct 27, 2022

From concept to final version, producing a marketing campaign involves a lot of moving parts — and a lot of stakeholders. As a representation of your brand, the videos and creative assets you develop for a campaign can impact everyone at your organization, so it’s no wonder everyone wants in on the action when it comes to creative feedback.

Who gets a say in developing creative

The more people involved, however, the more of a chance there is to muck things up, especially if no one knows whose opinions take priority. While a creative marketing management project might start out strong, it’s easy to get bogged down in conflicting creative feedback and approvals.

Assigning clear roles and responsibilities is a critical step to moving projects forward and keeping everyone in their lane to help avoid delays. Let’s take a look at how to define roles as part of your creative project management and the reasons for doing so.

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The “who’s who” of creative collaboration

When it comes to creative feedback, there are a few standard frameworks for defining the roles of stakeholders. You may have heard of DACI (Driver, Approver, Contributor, Informed) or RACI (Responsible, Accountable, Consulted, Informed). But, essentially, they’re all the same: There’s someone leading the charge, higher-ups who give the go-ahead and an assortment of others who develop creative assets, make suggestions, or watch from the sidelines.

For video or creative marketing projects, stakeholders will most likely fall into the following categories:

  • Manager — This is your intrepid leader, shepherding everyone else through the process of ideation and creation. In some cases, you may have an agency lead running day-to-day operations, but there should always be someone brand-side running the show — someone who knows the ins and outs of the organization's structure in order to get the right people involved in approvals, creative feedback and review.

  • Approver — There will probably be several approvers across departments, representing everyone from legal to sales. These are usually senior stakeholders with the power to sign off on the latest script, an updated image, the final video edit and more. Note: You might involve different approvers at different stages of a creative marketing project.

  • Contributor — These folks probably make up the bulk of your project participants, and they are responsible for uploading new assets (or versions of assets) and commenting on existing ones. Contributors can hail from any department, and you’ll likely want to include people from your marketing, product, sales, legal and regulatory teams, as well as any outside agency partners or vendors.

  • Viewer — Some colleagues don’t need to lift a finger, but it’s still imperative they remain in the know. Viewers are able to see what’s going on without the ability to comment, upload, edit or approve.

Why roles keep productivity rolling

Once you’ve assigned roles to participants and granted everyone the appropriate permissions, managing creative workflow projects can move forward faster. Here’s why:

Goalposts stay steady. Video and creative assets require a whole lot of rework when a goalpost changes midstream, bungling timelines, and driving up cost. But having defined roles means only the necessary parties are involved at each stage of the game, ensuring a streamlined creative workflow.

Departments are synched. While you want to keep marketing approvals streamlined, it’s also important to be intentional about defining stakeholders in your creative project management. Establishing roles early ensures you don’t leave out other teams or vendors who may be affected by your work, whether they’re producing something similar or they’re impacted by your timeline.

All bases are covered. Since marketing creative sets the tone for your brand, what you create matters to other teams, and each team might have different considerations. This can be especially true when it comes to legal and regulatory matters. Aligning on roles helps each team understand its key involvement, allowing creative collaboration to flow while mitigating brand risk.

Timelines are transparent. Often teams or stakeholders weighing-in on a creative asset are unaware of the process involved to move that asset from ideation → launch. When you have a clear approval structure with set deadlines; the timeline, resources and investment involved in shipping creative assets becomes more clear. This transparency can help move creative process steps, including creative feedback and approvals, forward faster.

You limit politics and hurt feelings. Creative projects can feel very, very personal to those involved. A practical framework for involvement and marketing approvals by various team members keeps the process linear so that decisions can be based on facts rather than feelings, leaving less room for time-consuming disagreements.

Strong from the start with effective creative workflow management

Once you’ve defined roles and responsibilities, you’re ready for a strong project kickoff, one that creates a culture of transparency and information-sharing from the start. The right creative workflow management software can help simplify the process so you’re not spending time, effort and budget managing digital assets, creative feedback and stakeholder approvals manually.

Built specifically for creative workflow management, StreamWork allows you to divvy up responsibility and grant permissions so that the right users can manage a project, upload assets, comment directly on creative, and grant approval. You get involvement where you need it, and only where you need it, so that no one is blocking progress.

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Start routing your videos and creative assets through StreamWork's creative approval software today and see how it transforms your entire approach to creative asset development. Get started with a free, 30-day trial of StreamWork.

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Meredith is the Founder and CEO of StreamWork, a creative workflow management platform built for teams who work on creative. Meredith has 12+ years experience working as a marketer at Apple, Google, YouTube and Warner Bros., and has worked on hundreds of creative assets with teams large and small. Her mission is to simplify the way teams work on creative.

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